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How LSU, Clemson players approach social media during season

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NEW ORLEANS — Modern day athletes have so much to deal with when it comes to fan interaction and blocking out noise. The main culprit, as everybody knows, is social media.

That’s one reason why, about seven or eight years ago before Clemson was annually playing for national championships, Clemson’s senior captains made a rule that all future teams would end up following: no social media during the season. The Tigers go dark on Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, TikTok, etc., from the start of camp to their last game. They’re still allowed to scroll through and keep up with news, but are forbidden from posting any type of content. While coach Dabo Swinney jokes that he gets crucified for intruding on his players’ First Amendment rights every August, this policy really has nothing to do with him.

“Guys wanted to find a way to turn the program around, so they thought hard about what could help us limit distractions and keep us focused,” senior right tackle Tremayne Anchrum says. “It doesn’t matter what they say about us, what they think about us. It only matters what we think. It’s a rule that’s been passed down from team to team. Everybody has honored it, coaches have supported it, and it’s led to a lot of great instances of us not being involved in trash talk.”

Anchrum won’t lie: There have been times he’s wanted to respond or post something. “That’s just the way this generation is,” he says honestly. He remembers recently a fan tweeting negatively about the offensive line. “I was like, ‘That’s stupid’ and I wanted to give them a piece of my mind,” Anchrum says. “Then I stopped to think how a typical fan doesn’t understand everything we do.”

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